Marine Carpeting

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Got a question? Read these FAQ'S and then call us if you still have a question!

  • Can you give me some pointers on how to install pontoon carpet?

How do I measure the carpet ?

In most cases for boats under 20 feet, you can use the overall length of your boat plus 4 feet.  For boats over 20 feet add about an extra 5 feet or 20%.  This allowance should provide you with enough carpet for any bulkheads, lid cut-outs and lid covers.  We keep most of the standard colors in stock.  If you don't order enough the first time, we'll be happy to send you what you need to finish the job.  A lot of folks like to order additional carpet for any future repairs.  You can always "cut-in" a piece to repair a worn spot, a cigarette burn or a fish attractant oil spill. We also offer a binding service for those bigger scraps. Binding makes your scraps into floor mats! 

Carpet also has a "grain" and must be laid down all running in the same direction. We know this for a fact as we've re-carpeted at least 50 lids laying the carpet in the wrong direction and the color looks different.  We'll be happy to help  you with a layout and your carpet measurements. It'll also help to know that most of the carpet comes in 6 foot wide pieces, others are 8, 8 1/2 or 12 foot widths.  To reduce the number of seams in your boat, you'll need to layout the carpet using different lengths (remember the grain). Send us an email with your measurements or fax us a drawing: 229-465-0978

Square yards: Almost all carpet is sold by the square foot or square yard.  A square foot is just a piece of carpet 12 inches wide by 12 inches long. There is 9 square feet to a square yard. To determine square yards on a bigger area, multiply the length of the are by the width and divide the answer by 9. For example, a 12' by 16' room. is 192 Square feet. Dividing the 192 by 9 we get 21.33 square yards.

Bubba, if you don't have a clue, just call me.  I'll do'er fer ya!

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How does indoor/outdoor carpet differ from regular carpet.

All we sell is carpet that can be used either indoor or outdoor. The carpets are made to be for water and sun resistant! The fibers are treated for UV protection and the carpet backings are made for a water or damp environment. The backing is typically rubber and in most cases needs to be glued to the substrate. (Bubba, that's the surface you're putting on the carpet on! You know the floor of the boat or the floor of the outhouse!) The fibers are made with the colors embedded in them, so there is no dye process involved. The  fibers are really a form or nylon type material and as such generally can be singed or scorched on the edges just like we've done for years with our nylon ropes.

However, you won't notice the fibers as being harsh or rough like the old grass indoor/outdoor carpet. The fibers are actually quite soft and can be very plush.

How Long will the Carpets last in the sun, rain and white stuff!

Typically, marine and indoor/outdoor carpets can last well over 5 years, but it depends on the exact conditions. In the south, we've found that the carpets can actually outlast most deck paints and wood stains. For those living in the extreme northern states I suggest two things:

        1.  Move to to a warmer climate ha ha.  

        2.  Buy carpet such as the Berber or 40oz  with NuWave backing that can be rolled up in the winter months and stored until, what'd ya call it? Oh yeah, Spring!

I've seen some carpets priced lower than your's, how come?

Well, there will always be some differences in pricing but we've seen major 3 reasons for our carpet prices differing.

    1.    Some mills measure 20 ounce after the shearing or leveling process while other measure the 20 ounce prior to this shearing. Kinda like that 12 ounce Filet Mignon on the menu. The 12 ounce is measured before the cooking! (Bubba, you know what a filet mignon is?)
In other words not all carpets rated 20 ounce are the same. We use our carpets in building our super expensive bass and flats boats so we only sell the higher grades.

We've had years of field and testing experience with the products we sell and use so we know which mills are superior.

    2.    Some carpet dealers seem to be only brokers. They don't inventory or actually install carpets. Ask them if they can ship any color today!  Ask about their expertise in installing carpets. If you need any help or advice they won't be able to help. Ask if you make a mistake and only need say 3 feet can they send you additional carpet. Ask about their experiences with the mill.

    3.    Many carpet dealers seem to add on heavier freight and handling charges.

    4.    We include freight allowance, up to $25.00, a carpet knife with 10 extra blades and our famous, well written, self-explanatory, pullilittzeer prize winning (pullilittzeer is one of Bubba's buddies!), english teach approved and lousy pictured instruction and installation manual.  (Author autographed upon request!) ((If you have bugs in your garage, we'll even include the authors picture, posting this in your garage will clean out the roaches--no guarantees but it works in our shop. ))

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Where Can I Find Carpet Installation Supplies... ?

We sell all of the supplies you will need to install your carpet. On a local level you can also check with most hardware stores for extra blades and adhesives. You will need to have:
   A carpet knife, bent handle type is the best. We send one with KIT orders.
   Extra blades for the carpet knife. We send extra  blades with KIT orders
   Carpet adhesive. We usually use Contact Cement. Local Stores or cabinet supply
      shops.
   
A good cooler, full of Bud, for those guys who come over to help!
   Carpet Adhesive remover- Mineral Spirits works fine. Acetone really works but
        it's dangerous.
   A glue trowel if you use glue cement. For Contact Cement old paint brushes will
       work.

   A few throwaway adhesive brushes, 2 inch and 4 inch
   A tube of marine sealant--we suggest 3 M's 5200 or quick set 4200
   Sandpapers and sanding/grinding discs
   Machine screws and locking nuts. If your carpets are riveted on,
         we suggest you use #8 or #10 Pan Head philips, machine
         screws and nylon locking nuts to replace the rivets.
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What do I use to remove the old carpet? 

Your friends!!  Or try, Brute strength? Pull it up first. Use a scraper just under the carpet as you pull and this might get a lot of the old carpet up. On some boats, and all pontoons, the carpet might be under the seats, railings and hardware. Use the carpet knife to cut around these areas. Stubborn carpet can also be wetted with acetone to "eat" up the underlying glue. THIS IS A DANGEROUS STEP SO BE SURE YOU'RE CAREFUL AND OUT OF DOORS. NO SMOKING OR THE USE OF ANY POWER TOOLS WHILE USING ACETONE!!  

Or if you have a lot of old bottles of fish attracting oils, just dump it on the deck wait a week and the carpet will peel off. (Is that how you messed it up to start with?)

We like to clean the decks up enough where the left over carpet and glue won't be felt as a lump underneath the new carpet. The deck doesn't have to be 100% cleaned up! 

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What Tools and supplies Will I Need ?

        A good straight edge
        A digital camera for those before and after pictures you're gonna send me!
        A screwdriver or two
        A rubber mallet
        A supply of masking tape, chalk, magic markers, sandwich baggies,
           super glue
        A portable drill with an 1/8 inch drill bit and a phillips drill bit
        A set of scrapers to remove any old glue and carpet residues
  
     A butane lighter or grill starter for singing any threads
        A putty knife for the marine sealant 
        A mason's trowel if you use a non-contact cement. 
        An ice-pick type tool to align the metal moldings, if any
        A sanding or grinding disc if the old carpet is really stubborn
        A carpet knife. Not a razor blade type knife but a carpet knife 
            with a bent handle is the best. (included with the kit)
        A good supply of carpet knife blades, 10 should do it. (10 blades are included
            in the kit)
        A real good cooler, full of Bud Lite , for those chubby bass fishing types who
             come over to  help!  If they are going to fish in your boat, they need to be
             there for this surgery!

        We have all (most) of these tools and supplies in stock!

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Can a First Timer Really Install Carpet ?

Sure! If you're fairly handy, you can tackle a carpet replacement. Read our
instruction manual that comes with your order.
Measure twice! Cut slowly!
Replace the blade after every third or fourth cut or before any critical cut

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How Long Will it Take?

Most carpet removal and replacements will take at least 8 hours! We suggest
 you spend a few spare evenings removing the old carpet and cleaning the
deck surfaces of most of the old carpet glue and residues. Then, fill any
screw holes with the marine adhesive. Let it cure for at least 24 hours while
you read and re-read the instruction manual.  Be SURE that you read our 
manual 2 or 3 times before you even start the carpet removal!

Actually, it depends upon how much of that Bud and Bud Lite you have on hand.  A Bud Keg party will make this job go fast, as a ton of  helpers will surely come over! 

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What else do I need to know ?

Well, one thing that we are always telling ourselves as we install some new
carpet--LOOK AT THE OVERALL JOB! Don't be concerned if an edge or a seam doesn't seem just right. Do the absolute best job you can do and look at the overall effect of the new carpet job! You can go back and fix some errors after the entire job is done. We've heard, over and over, from our first timers how happy they've been with the entire job. Just don't be a total perfectionist and you'll be happy and impressed with your accomplishment. Although, we've seen some first timer's do such a good job that we'd like to use them as subcontractors.

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How much will it cost ?

The major expense is really your labor! The best 20 Ounce 6 foot wide carpet comes in our carpet kits. The most popular 25 foot kit, including a knife, extra blades, our instruction manual and shipping is around $225 or less. You might need a glue trowel, throw away brushes and  adhesive about $30-40. So say about $260.00 Max . You can even do it for less, about $200,  if you specify 16 Ounce carpet. While we keep some of these lower weights in stock, we generally find that the cost to labor ratio is unfavorable for the installation of these grades.  In other words, the 20 oz lasts a lot longer for the labor hours involved.
Be sure to check our sales page for special deals on carpet that could lower your costs to less than $150.00 

There is cheaper carpet available! We don't even stock it as we are convinced that 90 per cent of the job is in the labor and cheap carpet will not look as good when you are done with the job.

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Are your instructions easy to understand?

Well, we hope so! Our instructions are really a set of tips, tricks, techniques and photos that we have accumulated over the years of installing boat carpets. This manual is about 15 pages long and it has been used by a lot of us to install a lot of carpet. If you "add" some of your own tips to our manual, let us know! We'll incorporate them into the next revision of the manual!

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Is there a lot of difference between 12, 16 and 20 ounce carpets?

Absolutely! Just look at the ounce differences! Adding 4 ounces to a 12 ounce carpet is adding 33 1/3 % more weight! Now add another 4 ounces to the now 16 ounce carpet to get a 20 ounce carpet. You're adding another 25%! 
20 ounce carpet is over 67% heavier than 12 ounce carpet!  Which one do you think would wear better, last longer and feel more plush?! We highly recommend 20 ounce carpet to all of our serious fishermen because the price differentials are small when you consider that it take the same amount of labor to install, 12, 16 or 20 ounce carpet!  Some guys are also starting to use the 40 ounce carpet in their bass boats! For Pontoon Boats, the 40 ounce is like walking on a cloud as compared to that 12 ounce or less that probably came from the factory! See the 40 ounce at  40 OUNCE

As in everything there is grades of quality. With carpet, we assure you that there is tons of grades out there that we wouldn't sell you or put into our own boats. 

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What colors do you generally recommend or install? 

Our biggest selling colors, in boat carpets and in order of sales are,  Charcoal, Navy, Gray  Silver Blues and Dark Greens. Generally, other than the Navy and Dark Green, these colors are not solid colors. There are trace colors running through out the base color which helps break up the appearance of dust and dirt. Solid colors are much harder to keep clean and dust/lint free. You know how a solid black truck always needs washing? Well, a solid dark carpet is the same! Yet, our second biggest seller is the solid Navy. It just seems to be "RICH" and "ELEGANT" looking. If you want blue and don't like to vacuum, go with the Silver Blue, it's a lighter blue that is multi-colored to hide the dirt. When in doubt, be sure the spouse approves! I mean, guys--you don't want that look do  you when the job is done? You single guys, you may not know what "that look is", don't worry--you will, someday!  
 

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 What happens if I run out of carpet before I finish the job? 

We try and keep extra carpets in stock by dye lots until we know that you've finished your carpet installation. We basically keep the end roll remnants for at least two weeks past the last order. This way, we think we've got your shortages covered. We do recommend that you actually order a few feet extra when you do order as any left over carpet can be stored for future repairs. Man, once you've installed your own carpet, a repair is really quite easy! Call us for help!  Our carpet kits come with about 20 percent more than the length of your boat. So an 18 foot boat carpet kit would have 25  lineal feet of carpet. Plus, if you do have a lot of scraps we can make them into mats for you.  For $25.00, for the extra upgrade from a 20 foot kit to a 25 foot kit it ain't worth worrying about it. 

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What kind of adhesive do I use? 

In many cases we recommend that you use a nonflammable, exterior waterproof carpet adhesive. We sell  a waterproof  adhesive that some of  the manufacturer's recommend. Its also possible to use contact cement. However, due to the flammable nature of this glue and the fact that "it ain't called CONTACT for nuttin", we generally don't sell it to the consumer. Contact cement allows very little, if any, rug movement after you've placed the rug in place--Contact! Is Contact!! If you got a buddy or two to help, (remember that Bud) this won't be a major problem. If however, you're doing the job alone, stick with the movable, forgivable yet sticky enough exterior rug adhesive. We sell it...  

Click here  GLUE

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Can I get a carpet sample, to check color and quality?

We'd be happy to send you a sample!  Due to the number of requests and our lousy handwriting all we ask is that you send us a self-addressed, stamped envelope.  Tell us what colors, how long your boat is and we'll also include a quote for your possible order! Our address is:   P.O. Box 114  Attapulgus, GA  39815

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Can I use more than one color of carpet in my boat? 

If you want to be creative and different, go for it. Check the Teal Carpeted boat to see a great example of a two color carpet installation. As we say around here, just because the original factory did it, doesn't mean we can't do it different and better!

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Do you carry all these colors in stock for immediate shipment? 

No, but we usually have at least 10 rolls in inventory. The major problem with some of the colors is the factory's inventory. They just don't keep all of their colors ready for immediate shipment. If the factory has the color, we can usually get it to your door in less than a week. If the factory has to make the carpet it obviously can take longer. When you order your carpet, we'll notify you by phone or email of the availability and expected delivery date.

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Can  you pick the colors for me? Or at least help me out? 

Sure! We've carpeted so many boats that we are now considered carpeting legends, at least in our minds! 
Seriously, because of our experience we can surely help and we'd love to do it! Send us an email picture or two, of your boat and we'll make some recommendations.  

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Some of my carpets have like bound edges on them? Can you all do that for me? 

Sure! That binding is generally called serging when it's the sewn threaded type. There is also an overlay type that uses some form of leather or vinyl. Prices vary based upon the number of inches that are involved, so we'd have to get you a quote. This type of edge binding does help keep the carpets from raveling at the edges and is really useful in removable carpet pieces. 

Send us your leftover scraps and we'll send you back some nice floor mats. Course, we'll send you the quote first before we do the work!

Our Sea Ray carpets are all cut and bound on the edges, can you make these for us?  

Glad you asked! We do a lot of cut carpets for Sea Rays, Maxums, and all kinds of cruisers or off shore boats. Make us a good set of patterns out of heavy paper or send some detailed drawings! We'll give you a firm quote. 

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We have a pontoon boat that needs the wood deck  replaced, can  you help?

SURE! On the deck, we can only offer advice, unless you want to drag the boat to lower Georgia and leave it for a few days.   

Take an extensive set of pictures before you start. Label everything. Right, left, port, starboard etc. Front is aft! Rear is Stern so use the right terminology. But also, if it's aft, mark it starboard (right is a longer word than left and starboard a longer word than port and now you'll never forget which is which, just match up the longer words and you got it)

Be careful with the nuts and bolts. We suggest that you throw them all out and buy new stainless steel bolts and nylon locking nuts. 

Console removal? 

Try not to! We usually try to lift the console up as much as the wiring and cables will allow. Hang it from a rafter, a tree limb or get your spouse to hold it in the air. If you must remove it, (Ouch), mark every wire! Take some detailed pictures. 
Before you start, be sure that everything on the dash works. That way, when it doesn't after you've put it back together, you'll know it's your fault.
Use marine plywood or exterior grade plywood. Try and save the old pieces for patterns for bolt holes etc. Lay the old over the new, drill and mark everything you can find! Seal the wood with a coat of general purpose fiberglass resin and if you want a layer of fiberglass cloth. We us marine plywood when we're going to do this as regular plywood may not allow the fiberglass to stick. We use 3/4 to 1 1/2 fiberglass mat to cover both sides of the wood. Any holes drilled out are given a coat of resin. When we later insert the bolts or screws we also use 3M's 5200 or 4200 caulking/adhesive to seal and hold the screw.  

Installing Pontoon Carpet: We usually lay the carpet on the deck and let it sit for awhile in the hot sun! Then we smooth out the wrinkles. We then fold one half of the carpet back over the top of the other half. We do this lengthwise. On a 20 foot pontoon, we'd take say 4 feet by 20 and fold it over the other 4 by 20 foot piece. We then apply the glue to the deck, lay the carpet over the glue, smooth out the wrinkles and wait for it to dry. We want it to dry good enough so that we can then fold the other half over the completed half without any carpet moving on the glued side. We then glue the other half and smooth out the wrinkles if any.  Now, we can roll it with a big pipe, roll Bubba all over it if he's had enough bud's, walk on it, jump and down on it--anything to get the glue into the rubber grooves on the back of the carpet.

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